Cleo tips and tricks
Reviewed on Tuesday August 18, 2009 by Cody, Vancouver BC
I purchased this phone a few months ago from Bell as part of a Pre-Paid promotion (buy $50 worth of prepaid airtime and get the Cleo for $49 - so it came to $99 plus taxes). It was definitely a good deal, but I don't know if I'd pay $175+ for it... ;-)
I am writing this review to address some points I've read from other reviewers...
The Internet browser included with the phone, like most mobile browsers, is slow, often renders web pages incorrectly (or not at all) and the font, even on the "small" setting, is way too large - not much information can fit on the screen with a font so unnecessarily huge. I grew to hate the browser so much that I switched to using Opera Mini, a downloadable J2ME (Java) web browser. It is way faster, and actually renders web pages as they would appear on your computer's browser (albeit without Flash or Java).
You can get Opera Mini free from www.opera.com ... but make sure you download the "SIGNED" version. Unsigned apps on J2ME phones will prompt you with an annoying nag message asking permission to access the network every time you load a web page. Also, it's a good idea to pay a little more and get your service provider's "Unlimited" data plan.
At first glance, it looks like the only way to get ringtones and screen savers and other fun stuff on your Cleo is to buy them from Bell at ridiculous prices. Not so. You can use the phone's Web browser to navigate to places like www.getjar.com to get applications, and use the Phone Uploader at www.rumkin.com to send ringtones and other stuff to your phone without paying Bell. As long as you have the Unlimited Web Browser on your plan, this is completely free per-use.
I was very impressed by Bell and Cleo including Windows Live Messenger on the phone. With computer-like savviness, my MSN contacts were all a keypress away, complete with sounds. It seemed too good to be true, and it was: You have to pay $5.00/month just for the priviledge of signing into Windows Live, plus a per-message charge, which quickly ate away my pre-paid balance. Luckily, I found an alternative. You can use the Rumkin Phone Uploader mentioned above to send Java apps to your phone, and there are at least half a dozen different Java MSN Messenger clients for phones. The best one that works with the Cleo is KankaMSN - www.kankamsn.com
Of course, it's a good idea to have the Unlimited Browser plan with this. But even if you don't, KankaMSN is the least bandwidth-intensive java MSN client out there.
MUSIC AND PHOTOS:
A must-have for the Cleo is a micro-SD card. You can put all your MP3 music files on the card and listen to them on the otherwise-useless Music Player. And you can set the Cleo's camera to auto-save pictures to the memory card for easy (and FREE) transfer to your PC. I found the Cleo quite painful to use without a micro-SD card... lol
So now my Cleo is more like a little Laptop on the go. I love it!! Opera Mini lets me load 95% of webpages on the Web properly and quickly, and sync my bookmarks with my PC; KankaMSN keeps me in touch with my MSN contacts without paying Bell an arm and a leg per message, my phone is loaded with ringtones and screen savers that I didn't pay Bell $3 each for, and since I'm a geek, I also have IRC, SSH and VNC clients on the phone... lol